Originally published here. North Carolina’s Second Chance Act, while promising, will not reduce the state’s recidivism rate—the rate at which people with past convictions reoffend. At present, approximately 40% of those who are convicted of an offense are arrested again within three years of release. As the studies cited below show, by making expungements more
Originally published here. Pennsylvania’s Clean Slate law was a big step toward justice that still somehow doesn’t address the worst part of the state’s expungement laws–the awful years in which the criminal record haunts those who have paid their debt for minor offenses. But rather than recognize this, lawmakers are making minor concessions, such as
On Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2020, voters in New Jersey chose to approve a constitutional amendment legalizing marijuana possession and sale. But revising the criminal code for drug charges is only the beginning. There are many questions left unanswered by the simple ballot measure, including what happens to those with marijuana-related offenses on their criminal record.
On Thursday, Dec. 19, NJ Gov. Phil Murphy signed two major pieces of legislation to reform New Jersey’s criminal justice system and give those convicted of past offenses an opportunity to start over. The bills help establish New Jersey’s expungement process as one of the most progressive in the nation. It also helps give individuals
New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy vetoed a bill that would have made it easier for some people with marijuana-related convictions to clear their record. On Friday, August 23, Murphy announced that he rejected the plan, saying that the process was still too complicated. However, he offered suggestions on the type of expungement legislation he was
After months of back-and-forth over marijuana legalization legislation, New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy and leaders in the NJ legislature claim to have reached a broad agreement. In a press release on March 12, 2019, the governor, alongside Senate President Steve Sweeney, Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin and others announced the text of a bill to legalize
A recent ruling by the NJ Supreme Court renders anyone who successfully completes drug court in New Jersey potentially eligible for an immediate expungement of their minor criminal offenses. The decision clarifies a 2016 law that offers a clean slate to non-violent former drug addicts who show a desire and effort to improve their lives.
New Jersey is poised to join 10 other states and D.C. in legalizing marijuana. Part of the bill that recently cleared both senate and legislature committees includes language on how to get marijuana offenses expunged once the substance has become legal. However, bills often undergo changes—sometimes minor sometimes major—between clearing committee and whenever being signed
A bill to legalize marijuana in New Jersey passed a joint committee in both the state senate and legislature on Monday, November 26. The bill, as well as others related to medical marijuana and expungement of offenses, now move on to the full chambers where they are scheduled for a vote next month. The main
At 10 a.m. on Monday, Nov. 26, NJ State Senate and Assembly committees convened together to debate four bills focused on marijuana rules. Lawmakers will discuss a variety of proposals from taxation of marijuana sales to procedures to expunging existing marijuana convictions. It is expected that one or both committees will vote on the bills